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Rediff.com  » Business » India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Last updated on: July 17, 2014 19:55 IST

Image: Passengers travel on an overcrowded train at Loni town in Uttar Pradesh.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The Railway Budget unveiled big proposals to make train journeys a pleasant experience for millions of people.
Besides announcing private domestic and FDI in infrastructure projects and pursuing private-public partnership to boost the finances of the cash-strapped railways, the government plans to launch bullet trains, make stations & trains cleaner, make ticketing faster and easier and offer the best food onboard.

As Indians eagerly wait to see a makeover, here’s a look at trains and stations of world's fourth largest railway network.

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: People travel in a crowded train.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

In the last 30 years as many as 676 projects were sanctioned worth  Rs 1,57,883 crore (Rs 1.57 trillion). 

Of these, only 317 projects could be completed and 359  projects remain to be completed.

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Tags: India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?


Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

There are 4 projects that are as old as 30 years, but are still not complete for various reasons.

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Tags: India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: A worker unloads coal from a goods train at a railway yard in Chandigarh.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters
The Railways carries over one-billion tonnes of freight a year, connecting ports and mines to industrial clusters.

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Tags: India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?


Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

Funds to the tune of about Rs 5 lakh crore (Rs 50,000 crore) per year for next 10 years, are required for ongoing projects alone, Railway Minister Sadanand Gowda said in his Budget speech.

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?


Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The Indian Railways carries 23 million passengers a day. The Railways plans to meet the demands of millions of travellers with better amenities.

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: Passengers travel on an overcrowded train at Loni town in Uttar Pradesh.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The government plans to allow private operations in dedicated freight lines and rail connectivity projects under the public-private partnership (PPP) models to make services more efficient.

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Tags: PPP , India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?


Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

One of the reasons for the downfall is that passenger fares were kept lower than costs. 

This loss kept on increasing from 10 paise per  passenger kilometre in 2000-01 to 23 paise in 2012-13, as the passenger fares were not hiked to meet the cost of operations.

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Tags: India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: A woman crosses under the carriages of a parked goods train at Loni town in Uttar Pradesh.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The Railways has an ambitious plan of attracting Rs 1 lakh crore in the 12th Plan period ending March 2017.

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Tags: India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: Passengers travel on an overcrowded train at Loni town in Uttar Pradesh.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The government is in the final stages of drafting a policy on FDI in the Indian Railways, expected to soon get Cabinet approval. Fares would be subject to the scrutiny of the ministry of railways and the recommendations of the proposed Rail Tariff Authority, says a report in Business Standard.

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: Passengers stand in a queue to board a train at a railway station in New Delhi.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

Though private sector participation in the railways' mass passenger operations would not be allowed, certain exceptions would be recognised for infrastructure and capacity augmentation, including high-speed and other PPP projects, said a senior Railway Board official, says a Business Standard report quoting Railway officials.

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: A girl looks out through the window of a passenger train at a railway station in New Delhi.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The Railways have allocated an outlay of Rs 5,116 crore (Rs 51.16 billion) for projects in the  North-East. This is 54% jump over allocations in the previous year.

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: Passengers stand in a queue to board a train at a railway station in New Delhi.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters
A project Monitoring & Coordination Group consisting of  officials of state government, Railways and professionals will also be set up. 
 
Railways have been suffering heavily because of time and cost overrun due to poor project management. 

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India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?


Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

The Railways will set up an Innovations Incubation Center to harness  the ideas from the staff of Indian Railways and convert them into  practical solutions to increase efficiency of the system.

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Tags: India

India's overcrowded trains and stations: Will this change?

Image: Passengers travel on an overcrowded train at Loni town in Uttar Pradesh.
Photographs: Anindito Mukherjee/Reuters

Anticipating a healthier growth of economy, the Railways hopes to achieve total receipts of  Rs 1,64,374 crore (Rs 1.64 trillion) and would peg total expenditure at Rs 1,49,176 crore (Rs 1.49 trillion).

Tags: India